CrossFit Orange County (CA).
A CrossFit Affiliate Viewpoint
: "The Importance of Small Group Training for New Members"
by Jeff Hughes of CrossFit Orange County
New athletes that show up at our doorstep for training deserve to have personalized training to learn foundational movements and CrossFit methodologies. If you bring a new client into a veteran's class, a single trainer is often times taken out of the training picture for the "regulars" during that class in order to give some instruction to the potential client. And, if you do not give a new person the proper attention they may feel neglected, unsure of the "program", or worse yet get hurt observing someone else without proper training.
Our goal is to get all our new members trained on the foundational movements and CrossFit methodologies in six sessions. Albeit, they will still need a lot of work but our six-session program seems to benefit all our members. In the beginning, we had the new members go through the (9) foundational movements taught over four 1-hr sessions. This seemed to deter a lot of potential clients because it was tough and a lot to remember. We then followed a popular On-Ramp program that introduced the movements over the course of twelve sessions. We liked the program but feedback from our members took us to our current On-Ramp which is done in six 1-hr sessions. This seems to be the best fit for our new members. We offer three different time slots due to varying schedules of the potential client.
The six one-hour sessions are crammed with training, review, skills work, and a workout. Since we offer three different times to get this training, it is a juggle with having the proper number of trainers to manage the workout and On Ramp but worth it.
Here is a sample daily workout for our On Ramp curriculum:
Warm-up: 500 Meter Row (review technique if necessary), DROM
Review: DB and bar thrusters . . . modify and add weight.
Introduce: Jumping Pull-up
• Using appropriate sized box--set up each client in an area.
• Emphasize full extension of arms at bottom of movement and pulling to arm-pits at top of movement.
• Use legs . . .not just a pull of the arms.
Introduce: Assisted Band Pull-Ups
• Using appropriate band thickness--set up each client.
• Can place foot or knee on band. Step down for full extension.
• Emphasis full extension of arms, chin must go over bar. Discuss gradual weaning of band.
Introduce: Walking lunges
• Long steps, with knee staying straight above heel---not traveling over toe.
• For balance--step slightly to the right or left of center and turn foot slightly out.
• Full depth--knee should nearly contact ground each step, and then come to a full stand as moving to next forward step.
3 Rounds of:
Lunge 30 ft
10 jumping pull-ups
15 Thrusters (bar)
Some gyms jump folks in and they learn as they go. When this protocol is used, the regular members of the gym can feel neglected because the majority of your focus is on the new athlete. Hand in hand with that, if you train your class and jump a new client in you can make the new person feel all alone as you are training your group and giving the minimum attention to someone who may have no idea what you are talking about (nomenclature of CrossFit).
Other gyms offer one specified class time/slot that is for new comers to get the specific training that is needed. This model can have folks in any stage of beginner/novice training. You can have someone who is struggling with an air squat and have a new person who is struggling with a snatch. It can feel unorganized if there is not a plan in place to insure that all the foundational movements are covered appropriately.
How does your affiliate handle new folks to CrossFit? Do you offer a sip of the Kool-Aid or do you start an IV and main line it?Posted by Lisbeth at October 29, 2011 12:05 AM